The M.H.A. program at Des Moines University is dedicated to delivering a high quality and results-oriented curriculum designed to prepare graduates for meaningful careers in health administration and services delivery. Students at all stages of their careers are eligible for admission to DMU. Program faculty have determined that students who are early to mid-careerists; have several years of management experience; and have an scholastic record that supports their ability to meet the academic rigor of our program are generally the most successful in our program.
The four major decision criteria with brief explanations:
- Undergraduate major/grade point average – evidence suggests that a prerequisite knowledge of health care or business and a strong undergraduate performance is a strong indication of success in a MHA program. A cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) is preferred, though all applications will receive a thorough review.
- Record of health care, management or other work experience – The MHA curriculum is designed to support the professional development of managers who are in their early to mid-careers. Focusing on practicing professionals allows the program to promote higher levels of student growth and development on the National Center for Healthcare Leadership (NCHL) competencies.
- Management or leadership potential – Management and leadership are as much an art form as a science. The most reliable predictor of management potential is the trained eye of a competent leader along with the willingness of the student to commit to a rigorous development process. In assessing the management and/or leadership potential of the applicant, the program will review letters of recommendation from individuals who are currently in health leadership and/or management that can speak to the applicant’s potential. The applicant’s admission essays can also be probative as they are the applicant’s opportunity to describe their leadership potential and demonstrate their competence as a leader.
- Perseverance and determination – The program strives to find students with excellent communication skills who are resourceful, capable of solving problems and are determined. These traits will be required to successfully complete this program and also to be an effective health administrator. Before joining our program we ask applicants to describe why they want to pursue an MHA degree at DMU, how they learn and their understanding of what it will take for them to complete this degree. We want to know that students are making an informed decision and are committed to completing the degree. Committee members will be watching for applicants’ ability to demonstrate a prerequisite knowledge (understanding of the strengths and weaknesses) of the U.S. health care system, the rigors of an academic program, and their ability to plan for their success in the program and their careers.
Please note that in addition to considering the criteria discussed above, the Admissions Committee will take a comprehensive approach when reviewing application files and selecting students for admission. For example, the Admissions Committee will also acknowledge applicants’ commitment to their communities through volunteer service; prior degrees, certifications, awards, and achievements; and importantly; the ability to successfully complete the application process. This approach allows the program to remain flexible yet focused on ensuring we admit a qualified and diverse group of students to the program.
The criteria and student selection process is expected to result in admission of a diverse class of highly motivated and prepared, professionals ready to take their own personal development to the next level. We look forward to considering your application.